The rhetoric that came out of Buffalo Bills training camp regarding backup quarterback candidates Vince Young and Tyler Thigpen was fairly equal: both were erratic, both started off bad and got a bit better, and the two were flip-flopping with the second and third teams.
If pre-season games are used to create separation in position battles, however, then it's becoming quite clear that Young will be the chief understudy to Ryan Fitzpatrick in 2012.
Young had a solid outing in last night's 36-14 loss to Minnesota, completing 8-of-14 passes for 123 yards, including a gorgeous 64-yard go route to rookie T.J. Graham on a play fake that set up a Tashard Choice touchdown. Young now has a 71.5 quarterback rating through two pre-season games with the Bills (he's 13-of-26 for 173 yards), and has added five runs for 37 yards, as well.
While Young has shown marked improvement in the past week or so, Thigpen has not - he's still struggling as much as he's ever struggled while with Buffalo. Though he played well early on during Friday night's loss, Thigpen ended the night with a brutal interception that was returned for a touchdown. In two pre-season games this year, Thigpen has a dismal 22.7 rating, completing 11-of-23 passes for 94 yards with two interceptions while adding one scramble for 14 yards.
How far ahead of Thigpen has Young pulled at this point? Even Chan Gailey admits that Young has thus far come out ahead in this battle. Add in Young's superior level of talent and the play-making ability that makes him a more desirable in-game injury reliever, and barring something catastrophic, I think it's pretty safe to write this battle off as a victory for Young.